Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Light pollution's ongoing toll on migratory birds

This past Sunday the Washington Post magazine's cover story asked the question "Can the carnage caused by city skylines be stopped?"  We know that it most certainly can if we respond with political will and grassroots support for policies and practices that reverse our indiscriminate use of excessive, unnecessary, and poorly designed lighting.  Light pollution affects wildlife both as direct sources in their immediate environment and as skyglow that erases the celestial compass.  Volunteers with city "Lights Out" campaigns spend their early morning hours collecting the avian victims of our addiction to artificial light at night, providing crucial scientific documentation and data.   Read the Post magazine story here and learn more about the Fatal Light Awareness Project here.

Starry Nights Harrisonburg coming up!

Author (The End of Night) and JMU faculty member Paul Bogard and JMU planetarium director Shanil Virani have planned a week-long series of events:  Starry Nights Harrisonburg that will run from Monday, March 24th through Friday, March 28th and feature everything from night hikes and planetarium shows to panel discussions and a film competition.  IDA executive director Bob Parks is the featured speaker on Wednesday night and on Thursday Va. chapter co-leader (and JMU alum) Laura Greenleaf will provide a presentation and join in a panel discussion on campus lighting and safety.
The above link will also take you to media coverage on the week's events and the goal of an ongoing movement to reduce light pollution in the Shenandoah Valley.